by William V. Bobo, William O. Cooper, C. Michael Stein, Mark Olfson, David Graham, James Daugherty, Catherine Fuchs, Wayne A. RayJAMA Psychiatry. on-line first. August 21, 2013
Importance The increased prescribing of antipsychotics for children and youth has heightened concerns that this practice increases the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus.Objective To compare the risk of type 2 diabetes in children and youth 6 to 24 years of age for recent initiators of antipsychotic drugs vs propensity score–matched controls who had recently initiated another psychotropic medication.Design, Setting, and Participants Retrospective cohort study of the Tennessee Medicaid program with 28 858 recent initiators of antipsychotic drugs and 14 429 matched controls. The cohort excluded patients who previously received a diagnosis of diabetes, schizophrenia, or some other condition for which antipsychotics are the only generally recognized therapy.Main Outcomes and Measures Newly diagnosed diabetes during follow-up, as identified from diagnoses and diabetes medication prescriptions.Results Users of antipsychotics had a 3-fold increased risk for type 2 diabetes [HR = 3.03 [95% CI = 1.73-5.32]], which was apparent within the first year of follow-up [HR = 2.49 [95% CI = 1.27-4.88]]. The risk increased with cumulative dose during follow-up, with HRs of 2.13 [95% CI = 1.06-4.27], 3.42 [95% CI = 1.88-6.24], and 5.43 [95% CI = 2.34-12.61] for respective cumulative doses [gram equivalents of chlorpromazine] of more than 5 g, 5 to 99 g, and 100 g or more [P < .04]. The risk remained elevated for up to 1 year following discontinuation of antipsychotic use [HR = 2.57 [95% CI = 1.34-4.91]]. When the cohort was restricted to children 6 to 17 years of age, antipsychotic users had more than a 3-fold increased risk of type 2 diabetes [HR = 3.14 [95% CI = 1.50-6.56]], and the risk increased significantly with increasing cumulative dose [P < .03]. The risk was increased for use restricted to atypical antipsychotics [HR = 2.89 [95% CI = 1.64-5.10]] or to risperidone [HR = 2.20 [95% CI = 1.14-4.26]].Conclusions and Relevance Children and youth prescribed antipsychotics had an increased risk of type 2 diabetes that increased with cumulative dose.
by Jonathan S. Comer, Ramin Mojtabai, and Mark OlfsonAmerican Journal of Psychiatry 2011 168:1057-1065.Conclusions: Although little is known about their effectiveness for anxiety disorders, antipsychotic medications are becoming increasingly prescribed to psychiatric outpatients with these disorders.
It was accompanied with an editorial [see nothing is simple anymore…] by academic Dr. Alan Breier saying we needed "more research" before worrying about such things. Dr. Breier turned out to be an academic only since he left being the chief scientist at Eli Lilly in charge of Zyprexa right before Zyprexa received a then record breaking fine for marketing practices with this drug [Eli Lilly and Company Agrees to Pay $1.415 Billion to Resolve Allegations of Off-label Promotion of Zyprexa].
He freely described his Sales Reps promoting Risperal in children. One strategy was to start with Concerta [McNeil’s ADHD drug] then move to Risperdal – using Concerta to get in the door. He explained, "You can’t be a billion dollar product in a 1% market [Schizophrenia]. The evidence [email chains, Call Notes] showed that the focus was on promoting Risperdal in kids, and went up and down the hierarchy in Janssen’s sales force – from the top dogs to the rep on the calls – in other words, it was corporate policy. Toni’s testimony included other things too. Texas Medicaid was a target ["big payer"]. The reps fought the allegations in the FDA Warning about Diabetes on "every sales call." They were trained on how to sell "off-label" eg, a training slide about promoting Risperdal in kids under 13 said "most diagnosed with behavior disorders or mood disorders", "No Indications!!!", "sell on symptoms not diagnosis". These were not rogue reps, they were trained to carry the message.
I’m not complaining about this recent article. I appreciate their sticking to the task until they could find a cohort that was available to demonstrate what we already knew a long time ago. This kind of epidemiological research is hard work, and they’re to be commended for doing it. And speaking of Bipolar Disorder in children:
Three points: First, We often read that the pharmaceutical industry has a real burden because it’s so hard to get drugs approved. I would just say that once they get on the market and turn out to be much more toxic that advertised, it’s not very easy to spread that word or get adequate warnings approved either – the black box warning on antidepressants in youth to wit. Look how long it’s taken to get this well-known diabetes issue on the table. Second, the tactic of asking for "more research" to postpone action is a delaying technique until the patent runs out. That is clearly evident in this story of antipsychotics in children. And finally, when I read articles like Dr. Lieberman’s Time to Re-Engage With Pharma? or Dr. Friedman’s A Dry Pipeline for Psychiatric Drugs [where he says we just need to accept more risk and wants to "… entice the drug makers to reinvest in psychiatric drug development"], I wonder what my colleagues are thinking. Actually, I wonder if they’re my colleagues at all, or for that matter, I wonder if they’re even thinking.